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The Puppet Crown - Chapter 29. Into Still Waters And Silence The Puppet Crown - Chapter 29. Into Still Waters And Silence

The Puppet Crown - Chapter 29. Into Still Waters And Silence
CHAPTER XXIX. INTO STILL WATERS AND SILENCEInto the princess's own chamber they carried Maurice, and laid him on the white bed. Thus would she have it. No young man had ever before entered that sacred chapel of her maiden dreams. Beside the bed was a small prie-dieu; and she knelt upon the cushion and rested her brow against the crucifix. The archbishop covered his eyes, and the state physician bent his head. Chastity and innocence at the feet of God; yet, not even these can hold back the fleeting breath of life. She asked God to forgive her the bitterness in... Long Stories - Post by : prassociates - Date : May 2012 - Author : Harold Macgrath - Read : 3005

The Puppet Crown - Chapter 28. Into The Hands Of Austria The Puppet Crown - Chapter 28. Into The Hands Of Austria

The Puppet Crown - Chapter 28. Into The Hands Of Austria
CHAPTER XXVIII. INTO THE HANDS OF AUSTRIAMadame, surrounded by her staff and courtiers, sat in the main salon of the Continental Hotel, waiting for the archbishop. The false, self-seeking ministers of Leopold's reign crowded around her to pay their respects, to compliment and to flatter her. Already they saw a brilliant court; already they were speculating on their appointments. Offices were plenty; new embassies were to be created, old embassies to be filled anew. Madame listened to all coldly. There was a canker in her heart, and no one who saw that calm, beautiful face of hers dreamed how deeply the... Long Stories - Post by : prassociates - Date : May 2012 - Author : Harold Macgrath - Read : 684

The Puppet Crown - Chapter 27. Wormwood And Lees The Puppet Crown - Chapter 27. Wormwood And Lees

The Puppet Crown - Chapter 27. Wormwood And Lees
CHAPTER XXVII. WORMWOOD AND LEESMadame, like a statue of expectancy, riveted her gaze on the throne. Hers at last! Her dreams were realized. She was no longer a duchess by patent; she was a queen by right of inheritance; she was now to be a power among the great. The kingdom of her forefathers was hers. She had reached the goal without bloodshed; she had been patient, and this was her reward. The blaze of her ambition dimmed all other stars. Her bosom heaved, triumph flashed in her beautiful eyes, and a smile parted her lips. Her first thought had been... Long Stories - Post by : prassociates - Date : May 2012 - Author : Harold Macgrath - Read : 657

The Puppet Crown - Chapter 26. A Page From Tasso The Puppet Crown - Chapter 26. A Page From Tasso

The Puppet Crown - Chapter 26. A Page From Tasso
CHAPTER XXVI. A PAGE FROM TASSOFor a long time Maurice rode with his head almost touching the coal black mane of his gallant Mecklenberg. Twice he glanced back to see who followed, but the volume of dust which rolled after him obscured all behind. He could hear the far-off hammer of hoofs, but this, mingling with the noise of his own horse, confused him as to the number of pursuers. He reasoned that he was well out of range, for there came no report of firearms. The road presently described a semi-circle, passing through a meager orchard. Once beyond this he... Long Stories - Post by : prassociates - Date : May 2012 - Author : Harold Macgrath - Read : 1120

The Puppet Crown - Chapter 22. In Which Maurice Recurs To Offenbach The Puppet Crown - Chapter 22. In Which Maurice Recurs To Offenbach

The Puppet Crown - Chapter 22. In Which Maurice Recurs To Offenbach
CHAPTER XXII. IN WHICH MAURICE RECURS TO OFFENBACHMidnight; the music had ceased, and the yellow and scarlet lanterns had been plucked from the autumnal hangings. The laughing, smiling, dancing women, like so many Cinderellas, had disappeared, and with them the sparkle of jewels; and the gallant officers had ridden away to the jingle of bit and spur. Throughout the courtly revel all faces had revealed, besides the happiness and lightness of spirit, a suppressed eagerness for something yet to come, an event surpassing any they had yet known. Promptly at midnight Madame herself had dropped the curtains on the gay scene... Long Stories - Post by : prassociates - Date : May 2012 - Author : Harold Macgrath - Read : 1157

The Puppet Crown - Chapter 21. A Court Fete At The Red Chateau The Puppet Crown - Chapter 21. A Court Fete At The Red Chateau

The Puppet Crown - Chapter 21. A Court Fete At The Red Chateau
CHAPTER XXI. A COURT FETE AT THE RED CHATEAUAt eight o'clock of the following evening, that is to say, the nineteenth of September, Maurice mounted the Thalian pass and left the kingdom in the valley behind him. He was weary, dusty, lame and out of humor; besides, he had a new weight on his conscience. The night before he had taken the life of a man. True, this had happened before, but always in warfare. He had killed in a moment of rage and chagrin a poor devil who was at most only a puppet. There was small credit in the... Long Stories - Post by : prassociates - Date : May 2012 - Author : Harold Macgrath - Read : 2146

The Puppet Crown - Chapter 20. The Last Stand Of A Bad Servant The Puppet Crown - Chapter 20. The Last Stand Of A Bad Servant

The Puppet Crown - Chapter 20. The Last Stand Of A Bad Servant
CHAPTER XX. THE LAST STAND OF A BAD SERVANTThe cuirassiers stationed in the guardroom of the royal palace walked gently on the tiling, when occasion required them to walk, and when they entered or left the room, they were particularly careful to avoid the chink of the spur or the clank of the saber. Although the royal bedchamber was many doors removed, the Captain had issued a warning against any unnecessary noise. A loud laugh, or the falling of a saber carelessly rested, drew upon the unlucky offender the scowling eyes of the commander, who reclined in front of the medieval... Long Stories - Post by : prassociates - Date : May 2012 - Author : Harold Macgrath - Read : 2336

The Puppet Crown - Chapter 19. A Chance Ride In The Night The Puppet Crown - Chapter 19. A Chance Ride In The Night

The Puppet Crown - Chapter 19. A Chance Ride In The Night
CHAPTER XIX. A CHANCE RIDE IN THE NIGHTMaurice, who had wisely slept the larger part of the day, and amused himself at solitary billiards until dinner, came out on the terrace to smoke his after-dinner cigar. He watched the sun as, like a ball of rusted brass, it slid down behind the hills, leaving the glowing embers of a smoldering day on the hilltops. The vermilion deepened into charred umber, and soon the west was a blackened grate; another day vanished in ashes. The filmy golden pallor of twilight now blurred the landscape; the wind increased with a gayer, madder, keener... Long Stories - Post by : prassociates - Date : May 2012 - Author : Harold Macgrath - Read : 589

The Puppet Crown - Chapter 18. A Minor Chord And A Change Of Movement The Puppet Crown - Chapter 18. A Minor Chord And A Change Of Movement

The Puppet Crown - Chapter 18. A Minor Chord And A Change Of Movement
CHAPTER XVIII. A MINOR CHORD AND A CHANGE OF MOVEMENTMarshal Kampf, wrapt in his military cloak, with the peak of his cap drawn over his eyes, sat on one of the rustic benches in the archbishop's gardens and reflected. The archbishop had announced an informal levee, the first since the king's illness. He had impressed the Marshal with the fact that his presence was both urgent and necessary. Disturbed as he was by the unusual command, the Marshal had arrived an hour too early. Since the prelate would not rise until nine, the Marshal told the valet that he would wait... Long Stories - Post by : prassociates - Date : May 2012 - Author : Harold Macgrath - Read : 845

The Puppet Crown - Chapter 17. Some Passages At Arms The Puppet Crown - Chapter 17. Some Passages At Arms

The Puppet Crown - Chapter 17. Some Passages At Arms
CHAPTER XVII. SOME PASSAGES AT ARMSThere comes a moment to every man, who faces an imminent danger, when the mental vision expands and he sees beyond. By this transient gift of prescience he knows what the end will be, whether he is to live or die. As Maurice looked into the merciless eyes of his enemy, a dim knowledge came to him that this was to be an event and not a catastrophe, a fragment of a picture yet to be fully drawn. His confidence and courage returned. He thanked God, however, that the light above equalized their positions, and that... Long Stories - Post by : prassociates - Date : May 2012 - Author : Harold Macgrath - Read : 3159

The Puppet Crown - Chapter 16. What Happened At The Archbishop's Palace And After The Puppet Crown - Chapter 16. What Happened At The Archbishop's Palace And After

The Puppet Crown - Chapter 16. What Happened At The Archbishop's Palace And After
CHAPTER XVI. WHAT HAPPENED AT THE ARCHBISHOP'S PALACE AND AFTERMaurice, as he labored before his mirror, wondered why in the world it took him so long to dress. An hour had passed since he began his evening toilet; yet here he was, still tinkering, so to speak, over the last of a dozen cravats. The eleven others lay strewn about, hopelessly crumpled; mute witnesses of angry fingers and impassioned mutterings. Usually he could slip into his evening clothes in less than thirty minutes. Something was wrong. But perhaps this occasion was not usual. First, the hems of his trousers were insurgent;... Long Stories - Post by : prassociates - Date : May 2012 - Author : Harold Macgrath - Read : 3232

The Puppet Crown - Chapter 12. Whom The Gods Destroy And A Few Others The Puppet Crown - Chapter 12. Whom The Gods Destroy And A Few Others

The Puppet Crown - Chapter 12. Whom The Gods Destroy And A Few Others
CHAPTER XII. WHOM THE GODS DESTROY AND A FEW OTHERSSome time passed before Fitzgerald became aware of Maurice's departure. When he saw that he and Madame were alone, he said nothing, but pulled all the quicker at his clay. He wondered at the desire which suddenly manifested itself. Fly? Why should he fly? The beat of his pulse answered him.... What a fine thing it was to feel the presence of a woman--a woman like this! What a fine thing always to experience the content derived from her nearness! He looked into his heart; there was no animosity; there was nothing... Long Stories - Post by : prassociates - Date : May 2012 - Author : Harold Macgrath - Read : 1003

The Puppet Crown - Chapter 11. The Denouement The Puppet Crown - Chapter 11. The Denouement

The Puppet Crown - Chapter 11. The Denouement
CHAPTER XI. THE DENOUEMENTAt no time during the afternoon did Maurice find the opportunity to speak privately to Fitzgerald. Madame hovered about, chatting, smiling and humming snatches of song. She seemed to have formed a sudden attachment for Maurice; that is to say, she could not bear to lose sight of him, not for the briefest moment. He swallowed his chagrin, for he could but confess that it was sugar-coated. Madame had at last considered his case, and had labeled him dangerous. Somehow a man always likes to be properly valued. It re-establishes his good opinion of himself. Well, well; however... Long Stories - Post by : prassociates - Date : May 2012 - Author : Harold Macgrath - Read : 2759

The Puppet Crown - Chapter 10. Being Of Long Rides, Maids, Kisses And Messages The Puppet Crown - Chapter 10. Being Of Long Rides, Maids, Kisses And Messages

The Puppet Crown - Chapter 10. Being Of Long Rides, Maids, Kisses And Messages
CHAPTER X. BEING OF LONG RIDES, MAIDS, KISSES AND MESSAGESFitzgerald was first into bed that night. "I want to finish this cigar, Jack," said Maurice, who wished to be alone with his thoughts. He sat in the chair by the window and lifted his feet to the sill. The night wind was warm and odorous. He had found a clue, but through what labyrinth would it lead him? A strange adventure, indeed; so strange that he was of half a mind that he dreamed. Prisoners.... Why? And these two women alone in this old chateau, a house party. There lay below... Long Stories - Post by : prassociates - Date : May 2012 - Author : Harold Macgrath - Read : 614

The Puppet Crown - Chapter 9. Nothing More Serious Than A House Party The Puppet Crown - Chapter 9. Nothing More Serious Than A House Party

The Puppet Crown - Chapter 9. Nothing More Serious Than A House Party
CHAPTER IX. NOTHING MORE SERIOUS THAN A HOUSE PARTYStanding just within the door, smiling and rubbing the gray bristles on his lip, was the Colonel. In the center of the room stood a woman dressed in gray. Maurice recognized the dress; it belonged to Mademoiselle of the Veil, who was now sans veil, sans hat. A marvelous face was revealed to Maurice, a face of that peculiar beauty which poets and artists are often minded to deny, but for the love of which men die, become great or terrible, overturn empires and change the map of the world. Her luxuriant hair,... Long Stories - Post by : prassociates - Date : May 2012 - Author : Harold Macgrath - Read : 820

The Puppet Crown - Chapter 8. The Red Chateau The Puppet Crown - Chapter 8. The Red Chateau

The Puppet Crown - Chapter 8. The Red Chateau
CHAPTER VIII. THE RED CHATEAUTwo o'clock in the morning, on the king's highway, and a small body of horse making progress. The moon was beginning to roll away toward the west, but the world was still frost-white, and the broad road stretched out like a silver ribbon before the horsemen, until it was lost in the blue mist of the forests. The troop consisted of ten men, two of whom rode with their hands tied behind their backs and their feet fastened under the bellies of the horses. The troop was not conspicuous for this alone. Three others had their heads... Long Stories - Post by : prassociates - Date : May 2012 - Author : Harold Macgrath - Read : 1525

The Puppet Crown - Chapter 7. Some Dialogue, A Sprained Ankle, And Some Soldiers The Puppet Crown - Chapter 7. Some Dialogue, A Sprained Ankle, And Some Soldiers

The Puppet Crown - Chapter 7. Some Dialogue, A Sprained Ankle, And Some Soldiers
CHAPTER VII. SOME DIALOGUE, A SPRAINED ANKLE, AND SOME SOLDIERSThe stranger returned Maurice's salute with open-mouthed dismay; the monocle fell from his eye, he grasped the table with one hand and pushed back the chair with the other, while Maurice heard the name of an exceedingly warm place. The gendarme, who was leaning against the pillar, straightened, opened his jaws, snapped them, and hurried off. "Maurice--Maurice Carewe?" said the bewildered Englishman. "No one else, though I must say you do not seem very glad to see me," Maurice answered, conscious that he was all things but welcome. "Hang you, I'm not!"... Long Stories - Post by : prassociates - Date : May 2012 - Author : Harold Macgrath - Read : 1656

The Puppet Crown - Chapter 6. Mademoiselle Of The Veil The Puppet Crown - Chapter 6. Mademoiselle Of The Veil

The Puppet Crown - Chapter 6. Mademoiselle Of The Veil
CHAPTER VI. MADEMOISELLE OF THE VEILThe public park at night was a revelation to Maurice, who, lonely and restless, strolled over from the hotel in quest of innocent amusement. He was none the worse for his unintended bath; indeed, if anything, he was much the better for it. His imagination was excited. It was not every day that a man could, at one and the same time, fall out of a boat and into the presence of a princess of royal blood. He tried to remember all he had said to her, but only two utterances recurred to him; yet these... Long Stories - Post by : prassociates - Date : May 2012 - Author : Harold Macgrath - Read : 3179

The Puppet Crown - Chapter 2. The Coup D'etat Of Cousin Josef The Puppet Crown - Chapter 2. The Coup D'etat Of Cousin Josef

The Puppet Crown - Chapter 2. The Coup D'etat Of Cousin Josef
CHAPTER II. THE COUP D'ETAT OF COUSIN JOSEFThe king, who had been leaning forward, fell back heavily in his seat, his eyes full wide and his mouth agape. Then, to express his utter bewilderment, he raised his hands above his head and limply dropped them. "Five millions of crowns?" he gasped. "Yes; what would your Majesty say to such a proposition?" complacently. "I should say," answered the king, with a nervous laugh, "that my friend had lost his senses, completely and totally." "The fact is," the Englishman declared, "they were never keener nor more lucid than at this present moment." "But... Long Stories - Post by : prassociates - Date : May 2012 - Author : Harold Macgrath - Read : 577

The Puppet Crown - Chapter 1. The Scepter Which Was A Stick The Puppet Crown - Chapter 1. The Scepter Which Was A Stick

The Puppet Crown - Chapter 1. The Scepter Which Was A Stick
CHAPTER I. THE SCEPTER WHICH WAS A STICKThe king sat in his private garden in the shade of a potted orange tree, the leaves of which were splashed with brilliant yellow. It was high noon of one of those last warm sighs of passing summer which now and then lovingly steal in between the chill breaths of September. The velvet hush of the mid-day hour had fallen. There was an endless horizon of turquoise blue, a zenith pellucid as glass. The trees stood motionless; not a shadow stirred, save that which was cast by the tremulous wings of a black and... Long Stories - Post by : prassociates - Date : May 2012 - Author : Harold Macgrath - Read : 2487